Texas Code of Criminal Procedure 17.16 vs 17.19

Texas Code of Criminal Procedure 17.16 and 17.19 are important laws in the bail bond process. They explain specific rules and steps for handling bail bonds in Texas. Understanding these sections can help anyone involved in bail bonds, from defendants to sureties and bail bondsmen.

Summary of Differences

  • Article 17.16: Focuses on how a surety (a person or company that guarantees someone will appear in court by taking responsibility for their bail) can be released from their responsibility by either turning in the accused person to the sheriff or proving the accused is already in jail.
  • Article 17.19: Describes how a surety can get a warrant to arrest the accused person if they need to be surrendered, including notifying the accused’s attorney and filing an affidavit.

These laws have different rules and steps that must be followed. Knowing these differences is important for dealing with the legal system and understanding your rights and responsibilities. The next sections will explain these aspects in more detail to help you get through the bail bond process smoothly.

What is Texas Code of Criminal Procedure 17.16?

Article 17.16 explains how a surety (the person or company that guarantees someone will show up in court after being released on bail) can be released from their responsibility before the bail is forfeited.

Why a Surety Might Use 17.16?

A surety might want to be released from their responsibility for the bail bond if they believe the principal (the person they bailed out) is not going to fulfill their obligation to appear in court. By surrendering the principal to the sheriff or proving that the principal is already incarcerated, the surety can avoid financial loss and legal liability that would occur if the principal fails to appear in court and the bail is forfeited.

What is Texas Code of Criminal Procedure 17.19?

Texas Code of Criminal Procedure 17.19 explains the steps a surety must follow to surrender their principal (the person they bailed out) by obtaining an arrest warrant.

Why a Surety Might Use 17.19

A surety might want to surrender their principal and obtain an arrest warrant if they believe the person they bailed out is not going to show up for court, to avoid financial loss or legal responsibility if the principal fails to appear in court.

The surety can file an affidavit with the court or magistrate, providing details about the case and the reasons for surrendering the principal. The court or magistrate can then issue an arrest warrant if they find there is cause. This process allows the surety to avoid financial loss or legal responsibility if the principal fails to appear in court.

Key Differences Between 17.16 and 17.19

Focus:

  • Article 17.16: Focuses on the methods a surety can use to be released from responsibility before bail is forfeited by surrendering or proving incarceration.
  • Article 17.19: Focuses on obtaining a warrant to arrest and surrender the principal if the surety believes the principal will not comply with court obligations.

Method:

  • Article 17.16: Involves verifying the accused’s incarceration status.
  • Article 17.19: Involves notifying the principal’s attorney and filing an affidavit to obtain an arrest warrant.

Outcome:

  • Article 17.16: Surety is released from the bail bond obligation once incarceration is verified.
  • Article 17.19: Surety can secure the principal’s arrest to avoid liability if the principal fails to appear in court.

Real World Examples

Article 17.16: Jane is out on bail but is not showing up for her court dates. The bail bonds company (surety) wants to avoid losing their money. To do this, they decide to surrender Jane to the sheriff in the county where her case is pending. By handing her over to the sheriff, the bail bonds company is released from their responsibility for Jane’s bail.

Article 17.16: Jane is out on bail but gets arrested in another state for a different crime. The bail bonds company finds out and wants to avoid losing their money. They file an affidavit proving that Jane is already in jail elsewhere. The sheriff verifies this information and informs the judge. Once the incarceration is confirmed, the bail bonds company is released from their responsibility for Jane’s bail.

Article 17.19: John is out on bail, but the bail bonds company believes he will not appear for his upcoming court date. The surety decides to notify John’s attorney and then files an affidavit with the court explaining the situation. The court reviews the affidavit and, if they agree, issues an arrest warrant for John. This allows the bail bonds company to have John arrested and brought back into custody, avoiding financial loss if he fails to appear in court.

Implications for Defendants

Article 17.16

  • Surrender to Sheriff:
    • Immediate Custody: If the surety decides to surrender the defendant to the sheriff, the defendant will be taken into custody immediately. This means the defendant will lose their freedom until the next court appearance or until another bail arrangement is made.
  • Verification of Incarceration:
    • Detainer Placement: If the surety provides proof that the defendant is already incarcerated elsewhere, the sheriff will place a detainer on the defendant. This could affect the defendant’s ability to be released on other charges.
    • Bail Forfeiture Avoided: The process avoids bail forfeiture, but the defendant remains in custody, which could impact their daily life, employment, and personal circumstances.

Article 17.19

  • Notification and Arrest Warrant:
    • Notification to Attorney: The defendant’s attorney will be notified of the surety’s intention to surrender the defendant. This gives the defen